Tag Archive: cats


The Whispering Leaf …

The Whispering Leaf …

1.

Infinite tendrils,
weave exquisite meanders,

sketching an immaculate, delicate sheaf,

while morning’s dew whispers,

tales of forgotten woes, of vanished yesterdays,

scribbled on the solitary leaf.

2.

Murmurs float gently across lonesome trees,

in distant forests lush and dense,

caressing waltzing grasses in a sensual dance,

coquettishly inflaming every sense.

3.

Listen!

For the murmurs whisper to us all,

listen intently,

as the whispers recall,

countless crushed memories of many a lovers call …

Listen!

For the whispering leaf shares,

tales traversing distances,

to you, to me,
if we only still our raucous minds,

gazing upon each leaf,

dispelling the mirage of the superficial lives we lead,

revealing to us the truths that lie just beneath.

life now …

life now …

clutching, grasping,
holding onto,
gulping down, hungrily,
each breath, every breath,
fearing the onset of the years,
the splinters of time,
embedding,
piercing,
this moment, the very now,
numbed by repetition,
embalmed by trepidation,
of tomorrows yet to dawn,
suspiciously sifting through the strands of greying hair,
seeking clues,
the because to the whys,
the slow mornings,
restless nights,
jabbing reminders,
as years, decades,
scurry, scamper,
flee,
feeling it all slipping away,
standing, immobile,
stilled by the implacable sentinels at the doorstep,
these immovable sentries,
concealing the door,
that leads to today …

My loveliness



quote from google



My loveliness waits,

through decades of lost haste,

through trials and grief,

peaceful days and dire straits,

my loveliness waits.


I wait,

through decades past,

for kisses meant to last,

i wait,

to hold my loveliness,

in these lonesome arms,

i wait,

transcending lust,

overcoming desire,

i wait,


to be burnt to ash,

in the furnace of her raging fire …


art from google


unashamed love …



tongue-tied,

you said i was a lush,

intoxicated by you was i,


but instead i lied,

calling you my pineapple crush,


when all along i was afflicted, addicted,


with nowhere left to hide, adrift in the swirling sea of your love, and though,


time flies,

i still feel that rush,

gazing into the ocean of your eyes,


reducing me still,

today,

into an unabashed lush,

so forgive me this scribble,

this ode to you,

and all this unashamed mush …




Serenity Beckons



Serenity beckons,

a mirage of soft blues, flaming scarlets,

colours ablaze with tender compassion,

I wish for nothing fancy,

for just as the wilting rose,

weakened by the autumn sun,

at rest, peaceful,

waits for the coming of spring,

so do I,

wait patiently,

for the love that you so exquisitely bring

she took me in, when i was broke and broken,

she held me close, when i spun wordy webs, with half-truths spoken.

she mended my bruises, while i leeched off her spirit, a true light that soared free,

she breathed life into me, when i stubbornly refused to see.

she chipped away at the encroaching wall, that hid me from her, that distanced me from all,

she lent a hand, picking up my pieces, each time i stumbled, every time i took a fall.

she was too good for me, i can in truth say that today,

clasping my hand, as again and again i chose to cowardly crawl away.

today, i know that mere apologies are hollow, and sorry seems far too easy to say,

yet i am sorry, and ever thankful, for her infusing the light of hope, in far too many a darkened day.

today i also know these words are hypocritical, too easy while ensconced in my comfort zone,

today i also know, that for sentiments flung into the wind, it may never, in truth, be ever possible, to in honesty, atone.



the rapids of life smashed me against the jagged rocks of fate and time,

I tried my best to cope with the day-to-dayness of a society mired in cruel slime,

I tried, I cried,
I felt so cold I thought that I may have died.



Shattered shards of glass littered my path ahead,

I faked smiles though within I was dead.



The promises of joy seemed a mirage untrue,

which is when I found solace when I met you.



You shush my hearts cries,

you take me on your unfettered wings, soaring across the bluest skies,

your love is simple, tender, shielding me from the unbearable crowd,

your love is a balm, soothing me with gentle light, banishing every dark cloud.



This is why you are my world, a universe in my heartbeat,

a love so pristine, so warm, holding onto me so I may never retreat,

to that frigid void, that unfeeling vacuum that shrouded me,

before you took my hand in yours,

before you became the eyes through which I see …









we are starstuff …






(inspired by Dr. Carl Sagan)




stringed, strung, cobbled together, strands of DNA sewn from the cosmic rubble,



innumerable galaxies, theoretically plausible, infinite universes side by side,



floating in the quantum cauldron, within a bubble.




flotsam and jetsam in spaces between spaces,



where time, and days, kisses and tears, fears and years,



embroider the quilt of a multitude of races.


the vastness blurring much, grinding us down at times, into cosmic dust,



yet through stoic will, through love held deep, we rebuild again from crumbling rust.



starstuff, is all we are,



hewn through eons, within us, and into the stellar void so far.


starstuff is all,


we ever were,



starstuff is from where we came to be,



just starstuff:


you, and me.



         

inspired by Dr. Carl Sagan










The rains over Jo’burg …


The parched African earth soaks up the liquid offering from the heavens,

birds sing, ululate,

a chorus of catharsis flows through the barren land,

merging into a symphony of renewal.



The rains pour down,

transcending dry tinder of yesterday,

chasing insipid moments away,

drowning in a cacophony of jubilant life.



Life that rumbles,

streaming down desolate alleyways like meandering tears of joy,

drenching this mad, wonderful, insane, bubbling city of gold,

this Jozi, our eGoli, thirsting for nectar from the skies above.



Moments of undistilled mirth,

herald the arrival of spring,

a triumphant rebirth,

jubilant,

ecstatic,

as the Gods of Africa, the spirits of the ancestors,

smile down upon us.



We of flesh and of blood, of muscle and of bone,

thawing our hearts from frozen winter cold as stone,

infusing hope,

as the fragrance of rain on dry soil sketches rainbows,

seeking respite behind heaving clouds of charcoal grey,

the rains banishing winter chills away,

while graciously welcoming spring to stay.



The rains over Jo’Burg cleanse leaves on trees,

rinsing the detritus that listlessly hung,

dry and scorched by the merciless winter sun.


But today,

there are songs to be sung.


Today I am with the heavens,

no longer a mishmash of fragments,

and as our city breathes, purified by bounteous, rejuvenating rain:

I am whole,

once again …




they do not see me at all



they do not see me at all …


1.


They do not see me at all,

as I walk through these desecrated avenues,

of soul-deadening frenzy.


I see them rushing past me,

and no matter how hard I holler and call,

they do not see me at all.


It seems at times, that invisible am I,

for when I reach out, and shriek,

when on my knees I crawl,

they rush past me,

for they do not see me at all.


I have tried to raise their ire,

I have taunted and goaded them,

till exhausted and fatigued,

to the cold damp ground I fall,

still they rush past me,

for they do not see me at all.


I stand mutely,

waving my hands all around while scribbling verses in my unintelligible scrawl,

still they rush past me,

for they do not see me at all.


They rush past me, knocking me over without ever looking back,

trampling over my fallen form,

they look past my limp crumpled shadow,

as they whine on in their monotonous drawl,

and they still do not see me at all.


2.


When they look my way,

flickers of recognition crossing their faces,

I crawl back into my nothingness,

cocooned as the day begins to pall,

hoping, tired and broken,

to be back in the space,

where they cannot see me at all …







the subtle constant of mathematics …




Rigorous proof.

Simple.

Constant.

Real.


Not this implausible charade, this illogical masquerade.


All our perambulations,

wasted wordy navigations,

our tottering,

our swaying,

our constant greed,

to believe,

clinging onto inexplicable human need:


The belief in fantasy,

fantasy as staple nutrition,

upon which our common illusions feed.



when gloom sweeps down, sinking its talons into my skin,

it has always been you who guides me out of the fog, out of the doom, out of the bog.

it has always been you,

ever gentle,

ever loving,


ever true …

her moist eyes met mine,

entangled like twisting twine,


we laughed off all the years that have past,

while smiling at those still to be passed …



my starved eyes, aching for a glimpse of your smile, ready to beguile, their thirst quenched, seeking simple joys, not million dollar toys, finally, coaxed the ocean of your eyes, to reveal the kernel of truth beneath the veneer of lies, so love me now, today, where fractured dreams are made whole by the sea spray, plunging deeper into the ocean shimmering in your eyes, hoping we may breathe, like the terror of time, high on up into blue skies, where love roams unshackled, in that ocean so deep …

in your beautiful eyes …




Your eyes sketch skies,

a silken canvas.


Your touch,

the smell of your hair,

seduces me,

in an avalanches of curls.


Our kisses like tributaries fanning out, eroding life’s cold hard stone.


In your arms,

in the shadows of your form,


I am whole,

I am never alone.




We will weather the storms of fate, we will face the winds of life, together“, she said.


There was nothing for me to opine.



So I took her hand in mine.






no more wasted moments …



No more wasted moments,

strewn like salt across the wound.


No more wasted moments,

discarded as empty specks of trust.


No more wasted moments,

in dire need of thorough shredding.


No more wasted moments,

far too many of them to count.


No more wasted moments,

spent on wretched emotions left to dry.


No more wasted moments,

reeking of the stench of rotten feelings.


No more wasted moments,

coarse and vulgar and mutely violent,

no more wasted moments,

spent on the vile disregard of the silent.


No more wasted moments,

grasping each moment with a trust anew,

no more wasted moments,

embracing each moment for it to be true.






I’ve walked many a mile, alone, desolate, aimless“, I said.


not anymore“, she said with a smile,


we have found each other, even though it may have taken a long while“.




art by Pablo Picasso



100% total schmaltzy mushiness 😁 …




She knows she has my heart in her palm, she knows she is my life’s soothing balm.


She knows she lives deep in my heart, she knows we cannot imagine being apart.


She knows her love is my shining light, she knows she blazes within me bright.


She knows all of this and more, 

she knows neither of us have felt a love so pure …


😁😎😊




Nature at Peace …



Settling on a branch, the solitary bird sings of its desolate pain,

the leaves of the tree shielding the bird from the jabbing rain,

the delicate branch straining to bear the weight of the bird,

while all across the savanna, on countless branches, the echoes of plaintive birdsong can be heard …


… offering respite to the weary, rest for the weak, relief to those seeking a momentary escape from the scorching day,

the trees, sharing their bounteous shade, sweep the detritus of the day away …


… all of nature, in harmonious rhythm,

as gentle night embraces the savanna,

soothing all in a pristine feeling of ease,

as all of nature finds succour,

in the safe cocoon of nature’s comforting peace …








you have become my all.


my everything.


your love raging through my veins,


warming me during these desolate nights of piercing, stinging rains.




you are my all.

my eternal flame,


a constant beacon, drawing me ever closer,


sheathed in the glorious sunshine of your love,


a precious gift, bequeathed unto me by the generous heavens above.




you are my all.


my everything.




you are the radiant brilliance of a flowering rose,


your fragrance filling my being, merging as one with my soul,


as our hearts seek each others,


aching to be closer than just close.




your essence is soaked within my every pore,


i have never felt a love like this before.




so allow me to thank you for loving me so completely,


your blazing furnace scorching me,


as i have bathed in the ocean of your pure love,


a love so rare in this cruel time and empty place,


yet i am made whole,


as my hands caress the soft, gentle, beauty of your exquisite face.




you are my all.

you are my life.




you embrace me, as I do you,


shielding each other from the pain, the cold, the strife.




you have picked me up whenever i have stumbled,


as i continue to vow to do,


always lending you a hand,


as the wrinkles on our faces grow deeper, and as the years pall,


i will be by your side,


each time you slip,

and every time you fall … 





Mushy Rhyme





mushy rhyme …




your love reaches high above, as into the heavens it transcends, lending me a hand to climb out of the abyss where my being often descends,


your love is a warmth that in my void inspires, coaxing me gently in those desolate moments when hopelessness transpires,


your love is a lighthouse that through the mist of life shines bright, a constant in the fog of my blindness, always a beacon of hopeful light,


your love dispels the vacuum of every encroaching night, as it wraps me in your cocoon, a shawl warm and tight,


your love sprinkles flourishes of gentle joy, in the numberless times of skewering pain,


tending to my wounded spirit, a calm balm massaging the hurt out from the cold slicing rain,


your love is a breath that reaches inside me, instilling my world with renewed hope,


as the endless hours of reality jab and sting, guiding me through the seasons in which I fear I cannot cope,


your all-encompassing love holds me so very close, as I stagger under the burdens of excruciating, back-breaking weight,


it is your love that finally relieves me, by unburdening the detritus of cruel fate,


your love permeates all around, as I breathe your gentleness through every pore,


filling me with a once unknown bliss, a special tenderness that I have never felt before,


your love sweeps away the agony of losing my sight, my failing eyes driving me to anger, bordering on the insane,


it is your love that leads me to see that in the desert of blindness, there still falls the healing rain that is a balm to my pain,


your love warms me with your whispers of a truthful ethereal peace,


murmuring words of solace that this ache shall also cease,


your love reaches down into the pit of my gloom, extending your ever-comforting hand,


as you lift me up, from the bowels of despair, so that on my feet I may again  stand,


your love rests deep, in the recesses of my injured soul, 


gathering the shattered pieces, making them once again, whole,


your love sates the furnace, this blazing cauldron of passion in which I burn,


filling my restless nights with dreams I once chose to spurn,


your love is a torch, a shining light that leads me back to our shared pathway,


far from the thorns that on the boulevards of diamonds casually lay,


your love is a precious gift, far too special, a truth I shall always endeavour to cherish,


always and forever,


a treasure that stays within me,


an intrinsic part of my life,


without which I shall no doubt perish …


























schmaltzy mushy “it has got to rhyme” rhyme … 😊





Holding hands, we traversed the chasms of life,


hand in hand, through bleak times and strife,


holding each other in rain and in sunshine,


never letting go of your hand in mine.




We scour the earth for a peaceful place,


where bigotry does not bare its grotesque face,


and after all the years spent seeking,


we have found every nook and cranny where racism lies reeking.




All our desires, all of our dreams,


lie trapped in a gilded cage it seems,


still we search these lands for respite,


beyond the hate, despite the spite. 




How long will we have to walk these pathways,


seeking simple gentleness along life’s alleyways.




We find only intolerance and it’s poisoned dart,


and it seems that tolerance did long ago depart,


but we cannot be ever apart,


as we traverse these bumpy roads in our ricketty cart,


always,


always sharing the simple love of two souls merging as one whole part,


these are the truths we embrace forever more, in the deepest depths of each others heart …





Peace Dove art by Picasso




rhyming love and anti-bigotry scribble …



We lie on a bed, stung by many an intolerant thorn,

our love dismissed with bigoted scorn,

rattling the foundations of every societal norm.





We scaled the hateful walls of divisiveness,

we banished the boundaries of race,

of gender,
class,
tribalism,
ageism,

of religion and of creed,

we have walked hand in hand, upright and never cowering,

refusing to feed the beast of sectarianism,

of communalism.





We have refused to feed the weeds of hate,

we have ripped out the roots of fear that keep human beings apart,

we may be only two, our love hardly piercing the putrid flesh of discrimination,

or the smiling facade of accepted segregation.





We know our union is strong,

standing firm, however harsh the storms that batter us,

we have cast off the shackles that bind,

for true love like this, is truly far too rare to find.





Our path ahead may be beset with the bile of holier-than-thou judgment,

with the jabs of barbed words callously spoken,

yet our bond, our tethered connection is firm,

we shall not let hate shatter us, our love shall remain unbroken.





We tighten every strand, to keep our love buffered from the choppy oceans of racist fungal minds, who spew misogyny, blinded by their twisted notions,

while we grow ever closer, sharing the years of our love’s emotions.





So we walk tall, hand in hand, always standing firm,

finding solace in the overwhelming humaneness of the vast majority of our shared human race,

taking heart of the tide that must change,

as bigotry gets swept away,

allowing us all to share a common,

dignified,

free,

prejudice and racist-free world,

as we inch by inch, keep on the fight, to raise the flag of hope,

so we may all bask in its comforting shade,

as it is, at long last,

unfurled …







the beauty in you …




My eyes have travelled across oceans, beyond valleys and peaks, across the vast savannah and swirling in murmuring streams,


my eyes have travelled far and wide in many kaleidoscopic dreams,


my eyes have travelled here and there, and through places in between, yet your beauty remains a constant, skipping off the most radiant sunbeams.




I have felt the touch, the wild deluge of the monsoons, drenching me in its cleansing rain,


I have felt the touch, of moonlight cocooning me, a soothing veneer, that has kept me sane,


I have felt the touch, of your body, your lips, your being a healing presence, your unspoken words a melodic refrain.




You come to me in moments alone, when this world seems empty, a chalice brimming with tears,


you come to me in moments dark, your delicate whispers banishing away all my dreadful fears,


you come to me in moments of splintered thoughts, your wondrous self offering shade from the scorching sun that sears.




The beauty in you lends a lifeline to me, dispelling my mute vacuum, raising me from life’s empty hole,


the beauty in you douses the flames of my self-immolating fire, breathing life into me to once more be whole,


the beauty in you is a sublime truth, a truth of love and of belonging, a truth that has firmly taken root, in my once barren soul.



art by banksy





lost echoes of our love …




In the garbage heap of torn dreams,


long doused embers now cold and dead,


lie festering wounds, choked by dread.




Lost echoes,


whip up raw wounds, tearing at the scabs excruciatingly slow,


flayed by dimmed memories of long ago,


twisted, mangled emotions in our garden where flowers no longer grow.




Lost echoes,


creeping along life’s blade,


skewered sunlight condemned to the bleakness of the shade,


leaving a cowering form, torn apart, and afraid.




Lost echoes,


brewed in a chalice of once sprinkled kisses,


simmering on the furnace of burnt out wishes,


separated by deep crevasses, slipping into today’s yawning fissures.




Lost echoes,


now mere incomprehensible trashed thought,


charred, stuttering, a love reduced to absolute nought,


in life’s bazaar, where love is not love, but a commodity to be haggled over and bought.




Lost echoes,


dimming, dragged down bleak alleyways of curdled hate,


blinded by destiny, all hope lost to the tick-tocking clock of fate,


knowing now that it is all much too late.




Lost echoes,


unfeeling, just numb streaming tears,


burdened by the hopeless detritus, of far away splintered fears,


our shells, this life we carry, into the crowd as engulfing flames sears,


while we stumble,

while we fall through the cracks, as agony chuckles and leers,


at the hopelessness of all these days and months of the passing years …




art by banksy




just talking life  …




walking through the thicket, nettles stinging our hearts,



ever on the lookout for pathways of promise, yet forever treading the beaten track.



the hands of fickle time, jabbing these bodies, our shells to continue on ahead,



passing myriad alleyways of beckoning promise, a different course to chart alone,



though thorns dig deep, we persist, blindly trudging this dreary old way,



study hard, work harder, get married, have kids, buy a house, pay off the mortgage, babysit the grandchildren, develop illnesses, totter unsteadily on walkers, lay bound to our beds,



the well-travelled alleyways so many stumble through – over and over, and over again,



staying on the narrows, not going against the grain, banishing the murmurs, that whisper in our ears, to take a chance, to veer off the road, to stray down a more twisting thicket,



into an unknown realm, of dangers that may litter this course, of the light of hope that may shine in the dark,



oblivious of dragons that may lie in wait, hugging the shawls of comfort zones, soon to tattered by time and fate, to be left in the open, to brace the elements,



the same howling winds of that other well-trodden way, stung by similar twists and tragedies, tripping and falling, finding love perhaps, another one who has chosen to swim the streams alone,



we may lose our footing, sliding down slippery slopes,



but with a raging fire of hope, burning deep inside, knowing this has been our unique journey, far from the well-worn shoes of that other life,



stepping ever onwards one tiny inch at a time,



beholding beauty not even known,



tasting the sweet nectar of something new,



swimming the seas of uncharted waters,



thrashed by deafening winds,



tossed around by slashing waves,



till in the distance, we spot land,



and as the tides wash us ashore, we drift into fatigued sleep,



awakening to the soft chirping of the birds,



surrounded by swaying palm trees,



the hues of nature so vivid, the feelings in our soul so true,



as we feel talcum sands beneath our feet,



hearing the familiar music of life,



the sounds of the living surrounding us,



as we find this new abode teeming with life,



a world of peace we have at last found,



as we disappear into the sunset of a new day,



with the countless others,



who also chose this other way …






she who is free



she who is free …



I would have called out to her, across the the green fields she walked,

her silhouette fading in the distance.




I would have called out to her,

she who walked her own path now,

free from all the weight that caged her will.




I would have called out to her,

yet I remained still. 




what she said

she said that she had seen them all.


the promise-makers, the vow and oath-takers, the silken tongued smooth talkers, the quiet intense brooders.


she asked me if I could love her. truly love her.


I said that I would spend our lives trying.


it’s enough‘, she said.



L O V E

art by banksy




seeing you …



seeing you,

wraps my day in blanketed warmth,


seeing you,

feeds a hunger buried deep,


seeing you,

radiant in my dreams,


so close, so far,


scorches me, that burning furnace, an unquenchable desire,


the endless supernova of your ravenous fire …




art from google

art from google







The Shade of the Baobab …





The wandering soul rests,


under a Baobab tree that offers sanctuary,


as the South African sun,


burns copper red.




The wanderer gives thanks to the ancestors,


a moment of respite from the unending journey,


sifting through the dust,


divining the road ahead,


a time to reflect,


on miles lost through the sieve of time,


on paths that have yet to be tread …



art from google

tribute to my mother

reunion after 27 years






for my mother, Zubeida Moolla 1934 – 2008.

(dedicated to exiles, refugees, and the brave South Africans who struggled against Apartheid tyranny within South Africa)




meeting after 27 years




My mother passed away after a lengthy battle with Motor-Neurone Disease, also called ALS.


This poem is also dedicated to all the brave souls who are courageously battling illnesses and terminal diseases, and to the families and those dearest to them who are taking care of their loved ones.

May we always salute them and their families’ courage in the face of indescribably hard circumstances






I remember the tears she shed,

as she longed for her distant abode,

she wept often then, as she pined for her children, Tasneem & Azad,

and felt the future looked bleak, on that dim, lonely road.



I remember the tears she shed,

when that telegram came one afternoon,

‘regret to inform you stop father passed away stop’,

She wept often after that, for their last goodbye had been said too soon.



I remember the tears she shed,

on that glorious day in a February not that long ago,

when the prisoner finally walked out, breathing the free air,

she wept less after that, for then she knew where they were to go.



I remember the tears she shed,

soaring high above the clouds heading back to her land,

those tears came out in soft sobs, but her eyes were smiling,

defiant and full of new hope, as she held tightly on to his wrinkled hand.



I remember the tears she shed,

some years later, on that peaceful late April morning,

when she stood and proudly bore the ink on her aging thumb,

she wept a lot that April evening, knowing that a new day was dawning.



I also remember that on a Thursday not long ago,

as she was slipping away slowly, she seemed not to weep,

after all the miles and places, and after all the tears that she had cried,

I remember that she wept little then, as she drifted off into an eternal sleep.



(for my mother, Zubeida Moolla 1934 – 2008)




my mother and father

meeting comrade Nelson Mandela Johannesburg 2008

my father and comrade Nelson Mandela Johannesburg 1950s

my father with his comrade and friend Nelson Mandela




https://afzalmoolla.wordpress.com/2018/02/11/my-family-a-journey-through-the-years/



with late comrade Winnie Mandela talking about my mum and their friendship

courtesy of the Nelson Mandela Foundation

our love

art from google





She smiled, looking at the sky,


her hair flowing like a meandering stream,


her face the soft petals of many a dream.




She smiled, looking at me,


let’s walk this earth a bit, you and I“,


I was quiet,


nodding as we both looked up,


as candyfloss clouds whispered by.




yes“, I said, “let us walk together“.




We walk hand in hand  still,


sharing a companionship that blossomed long ago,


by sharing the peace, the freedom, the bonds of love,


blanketing us like a shawl, from the heavens above.


passion




art from google







 … missing

      the taste,

               

          lips

     brushing

          lips,


scribbling odes,


       fingertips

        drizzling

        scribbles,

                

on bare skin:


my muse,

                you,


           eternally

               you,


         my muse,

             

         a constant,


       inescapably

            hewn,


             into

        the fabric

       of my soul,


        evergreen,


       entwined as one …

 


          
 

quote from google



Love, Mania, and Verse




Love, Mania, and Verse …




The pendulum swings,

while the mania in my head,

strips me bare and yanks me,

into the cauldron of love.


Once again,

never divining the tea leaves,

knowing, always knowing,

the gnawing knots of unease,

that curl into a fist.


My isolation is a shield,

a suit of armour,

tightly clad around my self,

once worn,

then discarded,

taking its place on my barren shelf.


Love, mania, and verse,

coalesce, beseeching me,

with timeous forewarning,

not to tread into the quicksand,

that slippery bog of promise.


Yet,


in times past,

in moments present,

tis’ that very promise,

that I cling to.

At times I lose myself in the crowd,

revelling in the solitude found there,

at times I claw my way back to the now,

aching for the pain that stings,

the buried voice that sings,

dirges to forgotten emotions,

scribbled verse that flings,

the toys out of my cot,

while I wait,

for the mania to stop,


knowing,


always knowing,

that it shall be,

merely a matter of time,

before the other shoe,

must, as always, 

drop.







the years and our love …






years disappear, wisps of time consume moments,

even as tears streak down in the rain,

yet these true emotions remain,

in tune,


our heartbeats in symphonic harmony,

rises forever more,

a crescendo impossible to contain,


for our love like interwoven melodies,

soars,



eternally sharing a common refrain …




photograph from google




the girl with the beret at the bus stop …





I saw her at the bus stop, on a bitterly cold winter morning, her beret tilted to the side.


We exchanged polite smiles and furtive glances, till along came our ride.


We sat across each other and soon we spoke, breaking the ice, with talk of the chills battering our bones, as we shared sandwiches, for each other just a slice.


We spoke of the coldness around us, the frigid souls we encountered, we spoke of life’s pathways and where we hoped we were headed, as we confessed, what we feared most, was the banality of a life we so fiercely dreaded.


Thus began our short morning ritual, a bus ride with a stranger, not knowing anything except our names, our conversations so true they scorched like roaring flames.


We often laughed about the funny stuff we experienced, about the weight we felt we had to carry, the seemingly heavy burdens wracking us, all these chats, drowned out at times, to the soundtrack of the squealing brakes of our bus.


Our talks were blisteringly true, as happens at times with strangers, yet we opened ourselves up to each other, trusting the depths in our eyes, feeling a kinship, that logic defies.


We spoke of earning a wage, paying the bills, discarding the frills, we spent what felt like hours in those short-haul trips, baring our truths honest and deep, feeling for once, the harsh shadows of daily life retreat.


She was to me the girl with the beret, fierce yet gentle, knowing so much and still wanting to know, as was I on those mornings so long ago.


We spoke of lovers lost, of lost loves, of our ache for something tangible, something less gaudy, something more true, a mirage always just out of view.


I showed her my scars, she showed me hers, a lifetime of half-promises built on mounds of dust, we spoke of escape, into each others dreamscapes, even as all around us our world was covered in rust.


There was nothing about us but truth, nothing but a truth distilled, an understanding that someone out there in this cold world understood, far from the slicing of all the threatening grudges, we knew, our sharing was beyond all that, as we often in complete silence sat.


Our conversations churned into the butter of each morning, easing the coming day, and we smiled knowing that one else knew us, no one could ever relate, even as we were innocently oblivious of the often cruel hands of fate.


Her eyes danced with a fire, when sharing her insanity, and she said my eyes raged as well, embracing the craziness of it all, the two of us ever mindful, of the ache that did in each other dwell.


Then came that fateful day when she was there no more, and I felt the icy chills deep in my bare bones, feeling a vacuum I did not know my life could ever fill, a random friendship so tightly bound, that decades would pass till a friendship as profound as that was found.


I often thought of her, at another bus-stop, her beret tilted just slight, waiting for her ride in the morning air, feeling that we somehow remained connected, heart to heart, in a way impossible to articulate, for it was us, just us, with whom we felt we could only ever relate.


I think of her often, my friend on the bus all those years ago, sharing parts of our life, profound and without judgemental fears, through moments of agony, and through the smiles and the tears.


I must confess that to this day, whenever I pass a bus stop, I glance at it even as I know,


I shall not see that girl in the beret,

from so many years and lives ago …




( inspired by “The Boss” Bruce Springsteen’s “Bobby Jean” from the album ‘Born in the USA)


(also inspired by “Raspberry Beret” by Prince)



photograph from google

l o v e





art from google


L   O   V   E  . . .



Your breath reaches me, banishing the gulf between you and I,


across the oceans, so near we could be together in the blink of an eye.



Your fragrance swirls its way to me, across the distance between you and I,


thousands of miles traversed, sharing our own carpetted sky.



Your gentle caresses stroke my emotions, sweeping away the minutes that separate you and I,


our hearts meeting, beating in rhythm, in tune with the solitary nightingale, who for its mate does solemnly cry.



My entire being reaches out to envelope you, in this wondrous cocoon of love, shared by you and I,


breaking the barriers that stone walls can never contain, however daunting, however high.  



art from google



The Light Shines …


A beacon for revolutionary and real change,

a torch dispelling the narrowness of prejudice.


The light shines.

A permanent flame in the quest for universal human dignity,

an eternal sentinel against the comforts of embraced apathy,

The light shines, brightly,

today.


The light shall shine,

in your heart and mine.


The light shall shine,

tomorrow, and for all time …









with President Nelson Mandela, Johannesburg 2008 – from right: my father, President Nelson Mandela, myself

my father with Nelson Mandela – Johannesburg 1950s



https://afzalmoolla.wordpress.com/2018/02/11/my-family-a-journey-through-the-years/



Apartheid South Africa

Apartheid South Africa




Nelson Mandela Centenary

(1918 – 2018)



Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


A man of action forged in the crucible of resistance.


Resistance against racial discrimination.


Resistance against injustice.


Resistance against oppression.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


A man burnished in the furnace of struggle.


Struggle to defeat the crime against humanity that was Apartheid.


Struggle against the obscene notions of racial superiority.


Struggle against the scourge of hate.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


A human being who personified kindness.


A human being who embodied humility.


A human being who exemplified the unity of our human race.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


A man of peace, and a man who fought the just fight.


A man of forgiveness, and a man who battled the Apartheid regime for the need of taking responsibility for the heinous crimes of the past.


A man of truth, and a man of humane love.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


He was of flesh and of blood, and he shed his blood as he endured the lashes of the whip on his flesh.


He was of flesh and of blood, and he fought ferociously against the suppression of his fellow human beings.


He was of flesh and of blood, and he emerged with dignity from the hell of twenty-seven years of imprisonment on an island of tyranny.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


He was a man of a steely will in the long cause to rid all oppressed people from the yoke of colonialism, he picked up arms and fought the honourable fight.


He was a man of fiery resolve against the scourge of divisiveness, he was at the forefront in the battles against human subjugation and indignity.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.


Madiba was a revolutionary, in the trenches against the obscenity of poverty and deprivation.


Madiba was a soldier, on the ground in the service of the most vulnerable, the children of this world.


Madiba was unshakeable, and he lived the example of the committed revolutionary and the dignified statesman.




Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela walked amongst us not long ago.




Our beloved Madiba does not walk amongst us anymore.


And yet, Nelson Rolihlahla ‘Madiba’ Mandela lives within us.


Madiba lives in the streams that flow into the rivers that flow into the oceans.


Madiba lives in the winds that blow across the vast lands of Africa and beyond.


Madiba lives in the thud-thudding of heartbeats around our world.


Madiba lives in the veins where the blood flows through our common human form.


Madiba lives!


Madiba will always live!







The African Rains …




Soaking,

the rains settle,

meandering over jagged faultlines of our memory.




Drenching,

the rains settle,

streaming through veins,


the thud-thudding of the heartbeat of Africa.




Absorbing,

the rains that settle,

within each of us,


herald rebirth.




And,

if you listen,


if you strain to hear,


while shedding the raucous noise of your inner turmoil.


If you listen,


the whispers of the ancestors,


speak to us all,

lending us warmth,


urging us to stand,

even though we may stumble,


even though we may fall.






your love …

art from google



you swirled into my life like the scent of the parched earth after a few drops of rain …


you filled my heart with the nectar of your love and you drowned away all my pain …


you swirl and fill me each day with the caressing melodies of your love’s refrain …


you have made me yours with my heart in the palm of your hand …


to feel truly loved ..


again and again … and again


 

art from google

84 … for our father


http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/national-orders/recipient/moosa-mosie-moolla



84 …



(for our father and grandfather and comrade Mosie Moolla who turned 84 years old this June 12)


Mosie Moolla with Nelson Mandela in the 1950s



84 …


The number says so much, the years of sacrifice and struggle that can never truly be left behind,


the stark years of revolution when you and the countless footsoldiers shared the tightest bonds of comradeship,


the dedication to the cause of freedom against the savage cruelty that was the crime against humanity – Apartheid,


the 27 years in exile, separated from your two children, your family, your home,


holding the hand of our mother who stood by your side, torn apart from her children, her family, her home.




84 …


the number says so much, more than half a century ago, forging relationships in the cauldron of resistance,


your brothers and your comrades –


Nelson Mandela,

Oliver Tambo,

Walter Sisulu,

Moses Kotane,

JB Marks,

Joe Slovo,

Nana Sita,

Bram Fischer,

Ahmed Kathrada,

Alfred Nzo,

Yusuf Dadoo,


and so many more,

in whose hearts and spirit the fires of the just fight roared on, never to be dimmed.




84 …


the number says so much, of our mother and of your shared sacrifice, of not knowing the joys of seeing your daughter Tasneem and your son Azad grow, the pain of being ripped away from your families, your homes, your motherland,


to travel to distant countries to keep the fight alive on the outside, building solidarity in the world to isolate Apartheid South Africa,


to fan the embers into the flames of international pressure against Apartheid South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, returning home when your comrades Nelson Mandela and so many other giants were released from Apartheids’ prisons,


to work in mobilising the tasks for the  groundwork to build a new, free, non-racial, non-sexist democracy for people of all colours, regardless of religion or tribe,


to finally see your comrade Nelson Mandela become the first President of a free South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, as you still keep the lessons of history alive, as you shake us all to remember and never to forget the comrades who were executed, tortured and killed, who fell on the battlefield, the comrades who did not see the birth of their dream of a free South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, yet the furnace rages on,


inspiring us and many more,


the furnace will rage on,


in our hearts,


deep in our shared core.







(for our father and grandfather Mosie Moolla who turned 84 years old on this 12th of June)



receiving The Order of Luthuli in Silver from former South African President Jacob Zuma


Johannesburg 2000s


with old comrades 2000s


with comrades 2000s






The Cost of Revolution …



(in memory of the June 16th 1976 student uprising in South Africa)





You hurled rocks, stones,

Molotov Cocktails,

Sling-shots against the brutality of racial oppression.



You fell on the streets of Soweto,

Thokoza,

Kagiso,

Sharpeville,

Tembisa,


and countless more across this nation. 



Tasting the acrid stench of tear-gas,


Feeling the flesh ripped off your bones by their dogs,


Drenched by water-cannons,

Stung by rubber-bullets,

Whipped by sjamboks,

Shot in the head by lead,

Paid for by your country’s gold.



You stood trial for Treason,

Facing the hangman’s noose,


You stood firm, you did not break,

Even though,

You had wives, sons, daughters, lovers, brothers, sisters, and friends to lose.



The revolutionary dream burned bright,

In all your hearts,


Even as the jackboot of Apartheid,


Fractured your bones and tore your families into broken and splintered parts.



You left your brothers,

Sisters,

Sons,

Daughters,

Lovers,

Wives,

Comrades and friends,


Seeking out foreign lands,

With only the ammunition that you held in your hearts, your minds and in your never-wavering hands.



The enemy did not waver either,


Tyranny didn’t cease.



2 AM knocks on doors around this land,

Meant to stifle, to intimidate,


Yet,

You took a stand.



Hungry,

lost far away from home, pining for freedom and your loved ones,


Still,

You stood firm,

You fought on,


“Release Mandela and all Political Prisoners” was your cry,

In capitals in far-off lands,


You feared not the bayonet in the enemy’s hands,


The revolution was burning bright,


Even as the dawn of Freedom was in sight.



Finally on a February day,

They released him and the joy was palpable, nothing stood now in the revolution’s way.


All the while,

The enemy consolidated its power,


Paying off traitors,


Seeding violence,


Orchestrating mayhem to taint the noble cause,


And still you took the tyrant’s rifles and clenched their muzzles in-between your brave jaws.



Never standing down,

Backing away,

Retreating to safe space,

The fire of revolution burned,

Spreading through the plateaus and valleys and townships and cities and villages in this pained land,


And still,


Still,

You held that Kalashnikov in your hand.



And when that day of freedom came,


You felt the stirrings of joy and pain and yes,

Of shame.



You felt the shame of leaving those you left behind,


You tasted again the pain,

Of economic hardships,

Of capitalism and its illusory promise,

Of a revolution left incomplete,


Till,

Every man, woman and child has enough to eat.



A revolution still incomplete,

Where hunger stalks the night,

Where mercy,

And comradely solidarity,

Left last night on a first-class flight.



You stand tall still,

Working as you always have,


Polishing the metal chariots of those you once bled for,


Still feeling the injustice,

Of not having the two cents more,


That deprives you of your daily bread,


And you try hard to remember,


Whether this is the revolution,


For which so many died,


The countless whose names remain unsaid,


The brothers and sister,

mothers and fathers,

Lovers and friends,


the martyred dead.






(dedicated to all South Africans who sacrificed their lives, their families, in pursuit of the revolutionary dream. A dream that remains a dream to many, and a dream that will continue to be dreamed)



all photographs from google



All that Jazz

art from google



?



is it perchance

that moment


tattoed in my mind ?




our shared dance ?


a lifetime ago ?


in jazzy-smoked ol’ johannesburg town 



?


was it perchance

your smile


as gentle as the whispers of my perennial dream …


… your eyes


an ocean into whose smokey waters i yearn to drown


away from this

away from it all


far

far

away from this life


this daily

work-sleep-cage

of vacuumed lies


this

cavernous

prison


of leaden skies




breaking the shackles


casting off the burden


of carrying it all

of shouldering this world


your world


while

feeling at times


like your back is

closing in

against a blank wall.




2.




ah but enough of that talk


that talk of yesteryear



for now


i dream


i dream waking dreams


of that night

in whiskey-glazed

ol’ johannesburg town


of holding on

to that shared dance


is it that moment

that crystallised moment


is it

perchance



?



art from google

apologies to her

art from google



apologies to her who knows …





I walk through this neverending thicket,


thorns jabbing at my side, 


left out in the cold, a shimmering blade,

slicing emotions apart,


as she prepares once more, to depart.

I find her settled in a corner of my manic mind,

shedding yesteryears moulting skin,


beating through the foggy thicket,

my feelings flailing, gnawing, stretching my mania thin.



She leaves, burying herself deep,

in the convoluted recesses of my remaining senses,


having stormed the ramparts,

overrunning my paper thin  defences.



Do tell her that I miss her,

and all the moments we shared,


do please also tell her that I am sorry.


I was cold.

I should have cared.


art from google

love | peace | respect

my recurring dream


my dream,

recurs,


delicious,

boundless, seamless,


one in which i am

allowed to savour,


lingering sensations,

quickening of the pulse,


the infinite pleasure,

of a few murmurs together,


profound,

intimate,

true,


for just as eternities may be lived in an instant,


i too may live a few lifetimes,


in a moment spent with you …




( dedicated to the countless souls who made the ultimate sacrifice in the war against Nazism and Fascism )



photograph from google

photograph from google





D-Day: France, June 6th, 1944.





1.




They were thrashed by the merciless sea.



They were drenched by the savage waters, their uniforms clinging to their shivering bodies.



They were mowed down as they approached the beaches of death.



The beaches of unspeakable horrors.



Gold.

Omaha.

Juno.

Sword.

Utah.



They were brothers and fathers and sons and friends and cousins and nephews and grandchildren and boys and men.




2.




They surged on, facing the metallic death of Nazism and Fascism,


they surged on and were cut into pieces of bloodied flesh and shattered bone,


yet they surged on.



They surged on so that we may live.



They surged on so that we may breathe the air of peace.



They surged on and on,



and on.




3.




Today their bones lie buried, along rows of crosses.


Today they lie beneath this earth.




4.




Today they live.


Tomorrow they shall live.


They who sacrificed their lives for humanity.



They shall live on eternally,


within us all!



photograph from google



( dedicated to the countless souls who made the ultimate sacrifice in the war against Nazism and Fascism )



photograph from google

art from google


seeking solace …





Bracing howling winds of fate, of love, 

enveloped by darkening clouded skies above,

what becomes of the heart that feels too much,

but desolate emptiness.


Merely traversing the daily grind,

fragile are the bonds, the ties that bind,


still hopeful, still searching,

for the solace that seems so hard to find.




bipolar blues

art from google






bipolar blues …



twisting minefields,

tearing neurons,

imploding with ferocious intent,

till synapses freeze,

numbly content.




I am rendered wasted, unfazed,


while the mind falters,
stagnating in puddles of highs and lows,


dumbed down, the mind ceases to gallop,

pulling the reins as every real thought –


S  L  O  W  S


– idle,
inured, pharmaceutically hazed,


all emotion stunted, razed,

floating,


aimlessly dazed …



art from google

Two Short Scribbles

art by banksy






Two Short Scribbles …



1.



nothing reaches,

the inner reaches,

of a heart,

that reaches too far.



2.



Alone, I rest.

In solitude, I breathe.

Alone at rest.

At last.





art from google

The Tears of Olives





for Palestine:

The Tears of Olives.






Trickling down shrapnelled flesh,


tears fall,


like

blood

on

bloodied

cheek.




In the sun,


lifeless bodies

lie cold as stone,



the tears of olives 

flow,



salty sentinels

of memory:



pain,

suffering,

occupation,

hunger,


the tears of olives

perennially streak,


etching pathways of dust,


between alleyways of desolation,


hopelessly bleak.




The slaughter continues,


as more dead bodies,


rot,


reek.